"This Harbeth User Group (HUG) is the Manufacturer's own managed forum dedicated to natural sound from microphone to ear, achievable by recognising and controlling the numerous confounding variables that exist along the audio chain. The Harbeth designer's objective is to make loudspeakers that contribute little of themselves to the music passing through them.

Identifying system components for their sonic neutrality should logically proceed from the interpretation and analysis of their technical, objective performance. Deviations from a flat frequency response at any point along the signal chain from microphone to ear is likely to give an audible sonic personality to the system at your ear; this includes the significant contribution of the listening room itself. To accurately reproduce the recorded sound as Harbeth speakers are designed to do, you would be best advised to select system components (sources, electronics, cables and so on) that do not color the sound before it reaches the speakers.

For example, the design of and interaction between the hifi amplifier and its speaker load can and will alter the sound balance of what you hear. This may or may not be what you wish to achieve, but any deviation from a flat response is a step away from a truly neutral system. HUG has extensively discussed amplifiers and the methods for seeking the most objectively neutral among a plethora of product choices.

HUG specialises in making complex technical matters simple to understand, getting at the repeatable facts in a post-truth environment where objectivity is increasingly ridiculed. With our heritage of natural sound and pragmatic design, HUG is not the best place to discuss non-Harbeth audio components selected, knowingly or not, to introduce a significantly personalised system sound. For that you should do your own research and above all, make the effort to visit an Authorised Dealer and listen to your music at your loudness on your loudspeakers through the various offerings there. There is really no on-line substitute for time invested in a dealer's showroom because 'tuning' your system to taste is such a highly personal matter. Our overall objective here is to empower readers to make the factually best procurement decisions in the interests of lifelike music at home.

Please consider carefully how much you should rely upon and be influenced by the subjective opinions of strangers. Their hearing acuity and taste will be different to yours, as will be their motives and budget, their listening distance, loudness and room treatment, not necessarily leading to appropriate equipment selection and listening satisfaction for you. Always keep in mind that without basic test equipment, subjective opinions will reign unchallenged. With test equipment, universal facts and truths are exposed.

If some of the science behind faithfully reproducing the sound intended by the composer, score, conductor and musicians over Harbeth speakers is your thing, this forum has been helping with that since 2006. If you just want to share your opinions and photos with others then the unrelated Harbeth Speakers Facebook page may be for you. Either way, welcome to the world of Harbeth!"

Feb. 2018
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Around and about in Britain - on-line Harbeth slideshow

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  • Around and about in Britain - on-line Harbeth slideshow

    Well, I'm slowly selecting, fine tuning and uploading photo's to our new on-line picture gallery to he found here: I've plenty to chose from, and the ones I think you'll like most are those that give an idea of today's United Kingdom as both a thoroughly modern country with all the latest technology in our homes and lives yet firmly rooted in a respect for the past. Take, for example, the homes I've illustrated on the picture gallery, some of which are five hundred years old.

    In the UK, people with money chose to live in these beautiful, unique old buildings when they could live in the most modern energy-efficient homes because the old buildings have a unique character which mass-produced homes do not. The older homes are energy inefficient and also need specialist, expensive maintenance using approved materials and methods in keeping with the period. Owning such traditional homes is a continuous financial burden, yet many aspire to do so. We should be grateful that those who have the financial means are willing to cherish these lovely old buildings and the desire to keep them in as-new condition.

    I'm looking for some pictures of 'Scones I have known and loved' ....
    Alan A. Shaw
    Designer, owner
    Harbeth Audio UK

  • #2
    A UK vistor's unofficial tour guide

    How about pictures of things, buildings, places etc. that you think a visitor to the UK would enjoy seeing but are off the beaten tourist routes?


    • #3
      Unofficial UK tourist ambassador!

      Originally posted by A.S.
      Is this the sort of thing you'd like to see?
      Well, it's exactly the sort of thing I'd like to see, but I don't expect you to drive across Britain taking pictures and posting them for my edification! (Although I'll gratefully look at anything you put up - thanks!)

      I've been to England and to Scotland, but only one trip each and for too short a period of time. One day, I'd like to rent a car and spend some time just driving across the country, stopping for hikes and local sights.

      Since one of your roles seems to be a sort of unofficial UK ambassador to the world, and the HUG readership seems pretty global, I'm surprised frankly that you haven't received more of a response.


      • #4

        How about some photos from the country side?

        {Moderator's comment: coming soon!}


        • #5

          Hi, Alan,
          Beautiful album and very good photographs. I was two time in GB, 1972 by Interrail (does someone remember that?) Edingburgh - Perth - Aviemore - Carrbridge (!) - Inverness ( The Ness Café!) - Kyle of Lochalsh - by ship to Oban - Colwyn Bay - Blaenau Ffestiniog - Ludlow (old Book Shops) and back via London to Germany.

          Second time in 1983 by bike from Harwich to King's Lynn. Really good times. So your picture remind me to the nice days I had in Great Britain.


          • #6

            Hi, Alan,
            apart from being a manufacturer selling beautiful loudspeakers and your honest representation here on HUG there must be a really dark secret down there for being egoistial :-))


            • #7
              More pictures in my Album - scones are on the menu

              I've almost got the hang of this album software, although it is rather quirky and you may experience some oddities like wrong captions from time to time. Anyway, since you've been having a scontastic few days baking away I've created a section on English tea rooms .... and I'm going to add a few of my own "Scones I Have Known And Loved".

              I've authored this album on a colour calibrated PC screen and have checked compatibility on the Mac and newest Fujitsu M532 Android tablet (thanks to son David, Fujitsu UK's Tablet marketing manager, lighter and thinner than the iPad).

              I am aware that the luminance standard (the gamma setting) is different between the PC and Apple and I've tried to strike a balance in authoring these images so that they are not too dark on the PC and not too light on Mac products. Hopefully they look natural on your computer.
              Alan A. Shaw
              Designer, owner
              Harbeth Audio UK